As some of you know, Mister has been sent away by the Army once again. He left a few days ago for Fort Benning, GA and will head off to the desert from there. We still don't know exactly where he'll be going, what he'll be doing, or how long he'll be gone, but we do know that it should be a year at the longest. So my donut of misery has begun again. (a Donut of Misery is an excel spreadsheet application that counts down how long he's been gone and how long he's got left and shows it to you in a pie chart of percentages)
Friday afternoon was rough. Really rough. It never gets any easier to say goodbye no matter how many times we've done it before. It broke my heart to know how much he'll miss while he's gone. Tot will be so different when Mister gets back. He was only 25 days old when Sam left. He could be a year and 25 days old when he returns.
It's going to be a looooooooooooong year.
I'll miss his help changing diapers, that's for sure. ;) And we REALLY missed him that first night at 1:30 a.m. when I realized we weren't even halfway done waking up for the night. But those are things I can handle. Those are not the things I am most sad about Mister being gone for. What breaks my heart is that Mr will have to see Andrew's first smile and hear his first coos and eventually words by video and by skype. Chances are he will miss every single "first" of Andrew's first year and have to experience them via thumb drive. I know it was hard for him to tell us goodbye - probably harder than it was for me to say it to him. Because although I miss him with every part of my heart that he owns, I still get to keep Andrew. I get to be here for that first night he sleeps through, the first time he crawls, the first time he laughs. And yes, it will be hard to live this first year as a Mom without Dad, at least I *get* to be here. I'm trying to make this a little easier for Sam by setting up a private webpage for the 3 of us. I started it the night he left. Every single day I will post a new picture of Andrew and any video I took that day. We can write each other on there and this way, Sam can watch Andrew change daily instead of being smacked in the face with how much he's grown when he gets back.
Here's the picture I started off with - it's Sam smooching Andrew goodbye:
And here is one of my Valentines and the flowers my other one sent me:
Aaaaaaand some video for you:
I'm still sad - it's only been a few days - but I'm in a MUCH better place than I was at the beginning of the 2006/2007 deployment. Maybe it's because he isn't in country yet, maybe it's because he's not on a line unit this time, maybe it's because I have a better idea of what to expect, or maybe it's just because I HAVE to be in a better mindset this time for Andrew. Whatever the reason, the absolute fear that gripped me when he left for Iraq is not there this time and I thank God for it. This time I have more of an "Oh my gosh I have to get through ANOTHER year without my husband" ache. The last deployment was SO hard and SO bad. We lost Russell and 51 other members of the group Sam left with and I can't even count how many of them came back wounded. But Sam and I made it through and came out the other end of it stronger and with more faith than before. We can do it again. This one won't be anywhere near as tough to get through as that last one was. I pray that God keeps him safe and that He brings him back home to me and Andrew as soon as possible and as uneventfully as possible.
One of the ways I'd like to pass the time while he's gone is with houseguests. I'm thinking if I have atleast 1 visitor lined up each month, then each month will pass by quicker. My mom will be here Feb 28 and Brooke is coming in March. Any takers for April? I'm serious - anyone who wants to come for a few days or a week and meet Andrew (and give me a break long enough to shower LOL!) is totally welcome!!!!!! Of course I'll still come to Arkansas a ton while Sam is gone but if I can get some visitors up here that'd be stellar. :)
Donut of Misery report for today: .09% down, 99.01% to go